For many people, weight loss is a continual struggle. There are more than 1 billion overweight people in the world, and U.S. citizens spend billions of dollars on different methods, foods, and programs in order to lose the extra weight. Even with quicker ways that cause significant weight loss in a shorter period of time, those who use them might backslide into bad habits, which could cause them to gain back what they lost. Here are a few ways to change your lifestyle that could make the struggle a little easier.
Calorie counting is a good way to lose weight and a good way to keep it off. A scientific study found that a calorie-counting mobile app combined with health education classes helped improve fat loss in 70 overweight men. Another study found that women who used a pedometer for three months lost more body fat and improved body composition compared to people without the pedometer. Seeing the numbers helps to make the weight loss real for you. It also prevents you from falling into old habits. If you’ve reached your goal weight, you might be more tempted to drink an extra Frappuccino or have a donut instead of a plain coffee or an omelet. If you see the caloric intake before you eat the food, you might have second thoughts about the high-calorie, low-nutrient choices that often lead to weight gain.
Take the Stairs
You might not think about it much when you opt for the elevator or escalator instead of taking the stairs a few feet away. Most of the crowd is going the same way. However, did you know people who walk up stairs, even at a slow pace, burn calories 3 times faster than when walking at a faster speed on a normal surface? If you take the elevator or escalator, you’re not doing much of anything at all. If you only have a flight or 2 to go, take the stairs. Also, consider that fitness experts recommend between 30 to 60 minutes of aerobic activity like stair climbing from 3 to 5 days every week in order to get the most health benefits. Instead of taking a walk around your workplace after lunch or during break, climb some nearby stairs instead.
Keep a Journal
Those who write down everything regarding their weight loss goals are more likely to lose weight and keep it off. One of the largest and longest weight-loss maintenance trials ever observed found that those who kept daily food records lost twice as much weight as those who kept no records at all. Those who write down their goals for weight loss, and for life in general, are also more likely achieve them.
Banning Risky Foods from the House
If you know Girl Scout cookies are your Kryptonite, keep them out of your cupboards. Sometimes cravings can hit like a freight train. So, if your favorite snack is in the cabinet and you know you also have a perfectly good stock of vegetables in the fridge, where do you think you’ll be headed first? A few lucky people are experts at self-control and discipline. If snacks aren’t in their caloric budget, they won’t touch them. For those of us who aren’t, however, we need to look out for ourselves. If we remove temptation, we are less likely to depend on those foods to fill a nutritional void that could be filled with kale, nuts, or fruit.
People only have a certain amount of willpower to draw from. If you deprive yourself for too long, chances are you will rebound hard in a way that will kill your diet. You need to find a way to balance healthy food intake with choices that will make you satisfied, rather than miserable. Plan small additions to your meals throughout the week, such as a small piece of dark chocolate after lunch or a small bag of baked veggies with salt to replace the bags of potato chips you love. Cravings also indicate your body may be lacking in particular nutrients. For example, an intense craving for chocolate probably means your body needs magnesium. Instead of reaching for a candy bar, try eating pumpkin seeds, almonds, figs, 1 square of dark chocolate, or banana. While some of these may be high in fats, such as almonds, they can contain less sugar and more protein, allowing your body to avoid sugar crashes later.
It’s not impossible to keep the weight off if you make small changes to your lifestyle to accommodate better habits and steer yourself away from poor, hunger-fueled decisions. For more help, or to get started on your weight loss, contact us about our Louisiana weight loss program. At Soza weight loss, we offer targeted solutions for rapid and long-lasting results. Contact us at (504) 475-9817 or fill out our online form to schedule a free consultation.